Celebrating Juneteenth

Spectators watch a performance by members of Sankofa Dance Theatre during a Juneteenth celebration at the Northway Mall on June 13, 2020.


Anchorage’s annual Juneteenth celebration commenced Saturday in the sun-drenched parking lot of the Northway Mall, where speakers and dancers and drummers and singers and other Alaskans of all ages gathered to commemorate the end of slavery in the United States.

It’s known as Black Independence Day. The crowd fell quiet as community leaders took the stage to address the ongoing struggle for equality and justice; the weight of the occasion; the affirmation that Black Lives Matter; the work that’s been done and the work still left to do. Then during performances by Sankofa Dance Theatre, Underground Dance Company, and other local artists the parking lot hummed with music, claps, song and dance.

Read more coverage from KTUU Channel 2 News

 The Juneteenth holiday is celebrated nationwide. In Anchorage, this year’s observance began with the kickoff celebration coordinated by Mountain View community leader Jasmin Smith, and culminates in a film screening and panel discussion hosted by the University of Alaska Anchorage on Friday, June 19.

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